Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Schneider has been impressed since he was named interim manager of the Blue Jays. CBC Sports

Three months into the job as interim manager of the Toronto Blue Jays and John Schneider has settled into the job fairly well.

Winning games out of the gate helped with the transition. It didn’t hurt to make the playoffs either.

This has all been part of Schneider’s long journey with the organization that drafted him in 2002.

“Every time I try to take a step back and realize how lucky I am and [that] Basically I couldn’t have asked for a better group to work with,” Schneider said. “There’s a lot of stuff going on. Lots of challenges and lots of ups and downs. But I would love to meet him openly.”

The 42-year-old native of Princeton, NJ, was promoted from bench coach when Charlie Montoyo was fired in July.

The Blue Jays won 13 out of 16 games after the change. The fall in the middle of the month set a moderate record in August, but the 18-10 September surge essentially sealed the post-season spot.

Toronto will take on the Seattle Mariners in the American League wild-card round. The series will begin with all three matches at the Rogers Center on Friday.

“We trust him,” general manager Ross Atkins said in a recent media availability. “We trust her work and we trust her process. We’re grateful she has the confidence to trust her instincts as well.”

Atkins said Schneider has been “extraordinarily prepared” and handled the ups and downs of the second half well.

‘Long term fit’

Schneider was named interim manager until the end of the 2022 campaign. With the club focused on the playoffs, the unveiling of plans for 2023 will likely wait until the off-season.

“He’s definitely a long-term fit,” Atkins said. “We will continue to work through this and feel good about his leadership to this day.

“Being a manager or not is not our focus – not because we don’t have the utmost respect for the work he has done and is doing – but more [because] All our energy is being directed towards winning.”

Schneider’s effect

Schneider put his mettle on the team from the start.

Players were more aggressive on the basepath. There was some batting order and bullpen experimentation. Closer Jordan Romano came more often in the eighth inning.

Schneider also isn’t afraid to publicly call out his players when needed.

When Vladimir Guerrero Jr. was kicked out last month after not running on the basepath in a game, Schneider said he “needs to run flat out more,” calling the effort “unforgivable.”

They later talked about it and Guerrero took ownership for Gough.

Schneider first took on a minor-league coaching role in 2008 and has since managed multiple levels, most recently in 2018 when he led Double-A New Hampshire to the Eastern League title.

Even though the upcoming playoffs are top of mind, Schneider admits he sometimes wonders what his long-term future might hold.

“In the last few months [I’ve] learned to embrace the good and the bad part of the job,” he said in a recent availability. “I’ve found out that I absolutely love it.

“I couldn’t think of a better place to be.”

look | Relive the Blue Jays ’92 World Series victory parade:

Enjoy the Toronto Blue Jays ’92 World Series Victory Parade

Watch footage of CBC’s coverage from the Toronto Blue Jays’ 1992 World Series Victory Parade.

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